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Peyrolles-en-Provence

43.646389,5.585833
43°38'47"N 5°35'9"E
Published: January 2010
last updated: March 2011
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The visit

Peyrolles-en-Provence This modest town situated just 20 kilometers from Aix-en-Provence hides some significant historical landmarks and lovely Provencal landscapes. Like one of the largest and most impressive palaces to be found in Provence called Château du Roi René, which is nowadays home to the village townhall. The château was originally built in XII century and belonged to archbishops of Aix-en-Provence. Later it was exchanged and became property of the legendary count of Provence – Roi René. After his death château became property of the king of France; during these years the castle came into complete desolation. Since XVII century the castle changed many hands, until it was bought out by the town council in XIX century.
A few steps from the château you will find church St. Pierre constructed between XII and XVII century. The church suffered repeatedly from the French Revolution and later from the earthquake in the beginning of XX century, which can explain its current state. The most ancient monument of Peyrolles is the chapel built in the beginning of XII century – chapelle Saint Sépulcre. With its form of four identical nefs it reminds of the eastern byzantine churches.
The lovers of nature will appreciate the walk on sentier de découverte du Loubatas – a 4.5-hour walk through the richest forest of Bouches-du-Rhône.

History

The village was inhabited from early prehistoric age. In 1979 children found a cave, dug in the tuff right under the château. The cave, called grotte aux Palmiers, has numerous fossils and traces of tertiary era.

Despite the presence of the royal castle, Peyrolles stayed through the history a modest backcountry residence, outside of the wars and rebellions ravaging Provence in the medieval period.

Practical information

Free parking in the village
Peyrolles is accessible by the regular bus-line Aix-en-Provence – Jouques.
Closest TGV railway station: Aix-en-Provence.
Closest airport: Marseille-Provence.

Comment on this article

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Roofs of Peyrolles

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